I don’t need to tell you that Hobby Lobby is a magical place. The first time I walked into one with my mother, I spent two hours and $200 roaming every aisle of the store, because OF COURSE I needed two pounds of rhinestones, and browsing through Christmas ornaments in August only seemed logical. Home decor and craft supplies just make me happy.
The first time I tried to go to a Hobby Lobby on a Sunday, I was disappointed that my own personal fairy tale kingdom was closed down for the day. I was even more disappointed when I tried to walk into one after 8pm and was unable to get my craft on. I quickly and begrudgingly learned that this was a very Christian franchise that placed heavy emphasis on family values and keeping holy the Sabbath. Bummer. I was sure, from that point forward, not to step foot into a Hobby Lobby within 24 hours of being penetrated out of respect (which was easy, because they’re closed on Sundays, anyway).
Now, it’s been brought to my attention that the sorority girl’s paradise is under threat of extinction. They have filed a lawsuit, the outcome of which will determine whether or not the 500 locations in 41 states will remain in business. Simply put, they do not want to provide their employees with birth control and “abortion-causing” drugs.
From founder and CEO of Hobby Lobby David Green:
We’re Christians, and we run our business on Christian principles. I’ve always said that the first two goals of our business are (1) to run our business in harmony with God’s laws, and (2) to focus on people more than money. And that’s what we’ve tried to do. We close early so our employees can see their families at night. We keep our stores closed on Sundays, one of the week’s biggest shopping days, so that our workers and their families can enjoy a day of rest.
A new government healthcare mandate says that our family business MUST provide what I believe are abortion-causing drugs as part of our health insurance. Being Christians, we don’t pay for drugs that might cause abortions, which means that we don’t cover emergency contraception, the morning-after pill or the week-after pill. We believe doing so might end a life after the moment of conception, something that is contrary to our most important beliefs.
It goes against the Biblical principles on which we have run this company since day one. If we refuse to comply, we could face $1.3 million PER DAY in government fines. Our government threatens to fine job creators in a bad economy. Our government threatens to fine a company that’s raised wages four years running. Our government threatens to fine a family for running its business according to its beliefs. It’s not right. I know people will say we ought to follow the rules; that it’s the same for everybody. But that’s not true.
The government has exempted thousands of companies from this mandate, for reasons of convenience or cost. But it won’t exempt them for reasons of religious belief.
Green believes that the government is “forcing [them] to choose between following [their] faith and following the law.” With representation from the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, he and his family are going to court in an attempt to stop the mandate. If they are unable to do so, Green will be forced to shut down the entire Hobby Lobby franchise, because he believes honoring God is more important than turning a profit. Considering the Catholic church, arguably one of the most powerful businesses in the world, was unable to stop the mandate, I have trouble believing that an arts and crafts store will be able to do so.
It looks like the end may be near, ladies. On the bright side, they’ll probably have a bangin’ “Everything must go” sale.
[via Tom O’halloran]